Matt Ryan Says He Never Considered Leaving Falcons in Offseason: 'I Love Being Here'

Adam WellsSeptember 1, 2021

Atlanta Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan (2) warms up before the first half of a preseason NFL football game between the Atlanta Falcons and the Cleveland Browns, Sunday, Aug. 29, 2021, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson)
AP Photo/Brynn Anderson

Amid a series of major roster moves during the offseason, Matt Ryan never considered leaving the Atlanta Falcons at any point. 

Speaking to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, Ryan said moving on from the Falcons "never crossed my mind."

"I love being here," he added. "I love being a part of this organization. Arthur Blank has been incredible to me from the minute I was drafted. He's incredible to my family. So I'm thankful for that opportunity. I love being in this city, living here."

There was no indication during the offseason that the Falcons wanted to move on from their franchise quarterback. 

NFL Network's Tom Pelissero reported in February (h/t NFL.com's Kevin Patra) that Ryan "is not going anywhere," and the Falcons were not having trade conversations with other teams at that point. 

Even if the Falcons wanted to move on from Ryan, his contract would have made it incredibly difficult to do so. They would have had to take on his $65.437 million dead cap hit if he got traded or released. 

Atlanta did get rid of Ryan's favorite target in June when Julio Jones was traded to the Tennessee Titans. 

Despite not having Jones to throw to anymore, the Falcons cupboard is far from bare for Ryan. They still have Calvin Ridley as a No. 1 wide receiver and rookie tight end Kyle Pitts has been drawing rave reviews since before the 2021 NFL draft. 

Ryan has been one of the most consistent quarterbacks in the NFL over the course of his 13-year career. The 36-year-old has thrown for at least 4,000 yards and 20 touchdowns in each of the past 10 seasons,